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  #1  
Old 07-06-2013, 12:49 PM
It's Not Rocket Surgery! It's Not Rocket Surgery! is offline
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This is a crappy list of "bizarre" celebrity deaths - we can do better!

Radar Online published this list of celebrities who died under bizarre circumstances. It's quite a crappy list; while it does have a few celebrities who died in genuinely odd ways (Sonny Bono, David Carradine, Michael Hutchence), the list is also populated by a whole bunch of celebs that died because of drug overdoses and travel accidents. Honestly, who could be surprised by famous people dying because of drugs and travel?

We here at the Dope can do better! Let's come up with some more celebrities that died in really strange circumstances.

To start you off: Randy Rhoads died in a plane crash, but this was no ho=hum crash! He was with the tour bus driver while they were buzzing the tour bus in a small plane.

Let's list some others! Real life only - no Spinal Tap drummers, even if you can't really dust for vomit!
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  #2  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:12 PM
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Mike Edwards of ELO- crushed by a rogue bale of hay while driving.

Quite bizarre.
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  #3  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:14 PM
Strainger Strainger is online now
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William Holden died when he slipped on a rug, hit his head on a table, and bled to death. He may or may not have been intoxicated.

Vic Morrow, along with child actors Renee Chen and Myca Dinh Le, were decapited and dismembered by a helicopter rotor when the helicopter crashed while filming a scene for Twilight Zone: The Movie. (Side note: Frankly I think John Landis should have done jail time for this one: putting the shot above actors' safety.)
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  #4  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:17 PM
Strainger Strainger is online now
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Jon-Erik Hexum, killed by wadding from a blank cartridge when he held the gun up to his temple and fired it.
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  #5  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:23 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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Whitney Houston. While drugs were a factor, the actual cause of her death was drowning in her bathtub.
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  #6  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:29 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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Tennessee Williams was having difficulty opening a bottle of medicine with a childproof cap. He ended up prying the cap off with his teeth and accidentally swallowed it, causing his death.
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  #7  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:34 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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Keith Relf electrocuted himself playing an improperly grounded guitar. Leslie Harvey electrocuted himself with an improperly grounded microphone.

Last edited by Little Nemo; 07-06-2013 at 01:35 PM..
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  #8  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:36 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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Isadora Duncan was wearing a really long scarf. She was a passenger in a car and the scarf got caught in a wheel and broke her neck.
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  #9  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:40 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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Sherwood Anderson died from accidentally swallowing a toothpick.
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  #10  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:41 PM
running coach running coach is offline
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Harry Houdini-punched in stomach which ruptured his inflamed appendix.
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  #11  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:45 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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Kirsty MacColl was hit by a speedboat while scuba diving on vacation.
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  #12  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:46 PM
Baron Greenback Baron Greenback is offline
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It's pushing the notion of celebrity a bit, but British MP Stephen Milligan managed to die while wearing stockings, a noose round his neck, and biting into a slice of orange laced with poppers. A very dangerous wank.
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  #13  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:47 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is offline
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Jerry Fuchs was caught in a broken elevator. He fell down the shaft while attempting to escape.
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  #14  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:48 PM
minlokwat minlokwat is offline
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Johnny Ace, rhythm and blues singer of the 1950’s.

From wikipedia:

Quote:
It was widely reported that Ace killed himself playing Russian roulette. Big Mama Thornton's bass player Curtis Tillman, however, who witnessed the event, said, "I will tell you exactly what happened! Johnny Ace had been drinking and he had this little pistol he was waving around the table and someone said ‘Be careful with that thing…’ and he said ‘It’s okay! Gun’s not loaded…see?’ and pointed it at himself with a smile on his face and ‘Bang!’ – sad, sad thing. Big Mama ran outta that dressing room yelling ‘Johnny Ace just killed himself!’
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  #15  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:52 PM
Ranger Jeff Ranger Jeff is online now
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Drummers from Spinal Tap
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  #16  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:53 PM
Miller Miller is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strainger View Post
Jon-Erik Hexum, killed by wadding from a blank cartridge when he held the gun up to his temple and fired it.
Was it the wadding? My recollection was that the concussive force of the blank cartridge, at that range, was enough to knock a hole in his skull, even without any projectile in the barrel.
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  #17  
Old 07-06-2013, 01:55 PM
Jackmannii Jackmannii is offline
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Virginia Rappe, who died of a ruptured bladder after, um, partying with Fatty Arbuckle.
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  #18  
Old 07-06-2013, 02:03 PM
BMax BMax is offline
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Brandon Lee, son of Bruce Lee,
Quote:
died of a fatal gunshot wound on March 31, 1993 after an accidental shooting on set of The Crow. During filming, a blank cartridge was fired from a gun barrel in which a bullet of a real cartridge was lodged. The bullet struck Lee. He was rushed to the New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington, NC where he underwent 6 hours of surgery. However, attempts to save him were unsuccessful, and Lee was pronounced dead at 1:03pm on March 31, 1993 at 28 years old. The shooting was ruled an accident.
In the scene in which Lee was shot, Lee’s character walks into his apartment and discovers his fiancée being beaten and raped by thugs. Actor Michael Massee's character fires a handgun at Lee as he walks into the room.[5] Proper blank cartridges were used during the fatal scene; however, due to a mix up during earlier filming of gun closeups, a bullet had become lodged in the barrel without anyone noticing. Dummy cartridges had been improperly prepared and then accidentally fired, the primer charge driving the bullet part-way into the barrel, resulting in a squib load. In the fatal scene the explosive charge of the blank propelled the bullet lodged in the barrel as if the gun had been loaded with a live round, resulting in the fatal accident.[6]
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  #19  
Old 07-06-2013, 02:03 PM
running coach running coach is offline
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Mark"The Bird"Fidrych- suffocated after his clothes were tangled in a power take-up shaft on the truck he was working on.
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  #20  
Old 07-06-2013, 02:09 PM
It's Not Rocket Surgery! It's Not Rocket Surgery! is offline
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Originally Posted by Jackmannii View Post
Virginia Rappe, who died of a ruptured bladder after, um, partying with Fatty Arbuckle.
More details from the SDMB.
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  #21  
Old 07-06-2013, 02:31 PM
Amateur Barbarian Amateur Barbarian is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miller View Post
Was it the wadding? My recollection was that the concussive force of the blank cartridge, at that range, was enough to knock a hole in his skull, even without any projectile in the barrel.
IIRC, it was the concussive force of the blank (a .44 magnum) that knocked a circular plug of his skull deep into his brain tissue.

Herb Caen made a couple of sad references to the "Jon-Erik Hexum One Small Lapse in Judgment Award" in subsequent years.
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  #22  
Old 07-06-2013, 02:34 PM
Amateur Barbarian Amateur Barbarian is online now
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Tom Mix, killed by a suitcase that hit him in the back of the head when his car went into a ditch. Some hotel in the southwest still has the "killer suitcase" on display.

There are varying stories about what happened to Lupe Velez. The most lurid has her getting sick from the overdose of barbiturates, running to the bathroom, getting her head jammed in the toilet and drowning. In any case, she was found dead in the bathroom from a combination of barbs and water or vomit aspiration... hardly noteworthy.
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  #23  
Old 07-06-2013, 02:38 PM
pancakes3 pancakes3 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMax View Post
Brandon Lee, son of Bruce Lee,
He was mentioned in the article.

Jimi Heseldon - inventor of the segway - fell off a cliff while riding a segway.
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  #24  
Old 07-06-2013, 03:09 PM
Tapioca Dextrin Tapioca Dextrin is offline
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Jimi Heselden, the inventor of the Segway, died from falling off a cliff. While driving a Segway

Vaguely famous Canadian folk singer Taylor Mitchell was killed and eaten by coyotes.

Extremely famous (for a mathematician) Kurt Gödel starved to death in very odd circumstances.
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  #25  
Old 07-06-2013, 03:10 PM
Colibri Colibri is offline
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Michael Rockefeller disappeared in Papua New Guinea in 1961 and his body was never found. He may have drowned and/or eaten by a shark or crocodile. However, it was also widely speculated that he was eaten by cannibals.

Australian Prime Minister Harold Holt disappeared while swimming in 1967 and his body was never found. It was speculated that he may have been eaten by sharks.

On the list cited in the OP, Steve Irwin's death by stingray spine qualifies as both bizarre and ironic.
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  #26  
Old 07-06-2013, 03:17 PM
BMax BMax is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pancakes3 View Post
He was mentioned in the article.
Yes, he was! I think he belongs on our list too, as his death was truly bizarre and happened while his career was rising.
We could add his father, Bruce Lee, whose death from cerebral edema and an allergy to a muscle relaxant/analgesic tablet, while young and incredibly fit is equally sad and bizarre. Especially when we consider all the crazy conspiracy/curse stories that school kids in Hong Kong and the US loved so much in the 70's.
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  #27  
Old 07-06-2013, 03:29 PM
It's Not Rocket Surgery! It's Not Rocket Surgery! is offline
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Sharon Tate - actress, murdered by the Charles Manson family.
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  #28  
Old 07-06-2013, 03:41 PM
Earl Snake-Hips Tucker Earl Snake-Hips Tucker is online now
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Stuntman Brady Michaels died not performing a stund, but from stunt preparation. He fell about 15 feet off a ladder while checking out an upcoming stunt to make sure everything was in order.
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  #29  
Old 07-06-2013, 03:45 PM
Amateur Barbarian Amateur Barbarian is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Earl Snake-Hips Tucker View Post
Stuntman Brady Michaels died not performing a stund, but from stunt preparation. He fell about 15 feet off a ladder while checking out an upcoming stunt to make sure everything was in order.
One of the most famous stunt drivers in Hollywood, whose name eludes both me and Google at the moment, was killed when his stunt car rolled over, at low speed, as he turned to return to the stunt location after a successful run.

Last edited by Amateur Barbarian; 07-06-2013 at 03:46 PM..
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  #30  
Old 07-06-2013, 03:46 PM
Knorf Knorf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pancakes3 View Post
Jimi Heseldon - inventor of the segway - fell off a cliff while riding a segway.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tapioca Dextrin View Post
Jimi Heselden, the inventor of the Segway, died from falling off a cliff. While driving a Segway.
Yes, Jimi Heseldon did die after falling off a cliff while riding a Segway, but the scooter itself was invented by Dean Kamen.

ETA: Jimi Helseldon bought the company that made Segway.

Last edited by Knorf; 07-06-2013 at 03:46 PM..
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  #31  
Old 07-06-2013, 03:59 PM
Half Man Half Wit Half Man Half Wit is online now
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From the article in the OP about Michael Carradine's death:
Quote:
The veteran star of classics like Kung Fu and Kill Bill died in 2009 after he was found hung in the closet of his Bangkok, Thailand hotel room, with a rope tied around his neck, wrist and genitalia.
Is this accurate? I always thought he'd been found dead.
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  #32  
Old 07-06-2013, 04:12 PM
Half Man Half Wit Half Man Half Wit is online now
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Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
Kirsty MacColl was hit by a speedboat while scuba diving on vacation.
Kirsty MacColl was hit by a speedboat, pushing her son out of the way of said speedboat, while scuba diving on vacation.
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  #33  
Old 07-06-2013, 04:32 PM
woodstockbirdybird woodstockbirdybird is online now
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If the story as told is true (the whole thing seems to be controversial), Bobby Fuller died under mysterious circumstances.
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  #34  
Old 07-06-2013, 05:17 PM
squeegee squeegee is offline
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Not really on point, but what the hell: Wiki's list of unusual deaths. I found that while looking up the story on the Segway death above. I haven't read the whole thing yet, but my favorite so far is:
Quote:
1998 October: The entire association football team of Bena Tshadi playing against Basanga was killed by lightning during a match in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Everyone on Basanga, the home team, survived.
.

Last edited by squeegee; 07-06-2013 at 05:18 PM..
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  #35  
Old 07-06-2013, 05:23 PM
Snowboarder Bo Snowboarder Bo is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pancakes3 View Post
Jimi Heseldon - inventor of the segway - fell off a cliff while riding a segway.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tapioca Dextrin View Post
Jimi Heselden, the inventor of the Segway, died from falling off a cliff. While driving a Segway
You're both wrong. Jimi Heselden did not invent the Segway; Dean Kamen did. Heselden bought the company in 2010.

ETA: I see Knorf beat me to the punch!

Last edited by Snowboarder Bo; 07-06-2013 at 05:24 PM..
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  #36  
Old 07-06-2013, 05:41 PM
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Music promoter Bill Graham died when the helicopter he was in crashed into an electrical power tower.

John Denver and John F. Kennedy Junior died in plane crashes - and both were the pilots.
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  #37  
Old 07-06-2013, 06:03 PM
kenobi 65 kenobi 65 is offline
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Originally Posted by Filbert View Post
Mike Edwards of ELO- crushed by a rogue bale of hay while driving.

Quite bizarre.
He was going to be my suggestion. I'm morbidly amused that he wound up being the first one posted.
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  #38  
Old 07-06-2013, 06:18 PM
JoseB JoseB is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pancakes3 View Post
He was mentioned in the article.

Jimi Heseldon - inventor of the segway - fell off a cliff while riding a segway.
Noooooope.

Jimi Heselden was a British entrepreneur, ex-coal miner who made good in the world and bought Segway Inc. (the manufacturer of the Segway) in 2010 and died on September 26, 2010.

The inventor of the Segway was Dean Kamen, who last time I checked was still alive and well

And now on-topic: I hereby present for your consideration the death of French president Félix Faure, who died at his desk in the Elysée while having sex with his mistress (persistent rumours all state that she was fellating him when he apparently suffered a stroke).

EDIT: Crapzoid, multi-ninjaed! :P
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Last edited by JoseB; 07-06-2013 at 06:19 PM.. Reason: Ninjas, ninjas, ninjas everywhere!!
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  #39  
Old 07-06-2013, 06:20 PM
moriah moriah is offline
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What's more bizarre than Sonny Bono dying from slamming into a tree while skiing is that Micheal Kennedy, the son of Robert Kennedy, died in exactly the same way five days earlier.
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  #40  
Old 07-06-2013, 06:21 PM
Amateur Barbarian Amateur Barbarian is online now
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Originally Posted by JoseB View Post
I hereby present for your consideration the death of French president Félix Faure, who died at his desk in the Elysée while having sex with his mistress (persistent rumours all state that she was fellating him when he apparently suffered a stroke).
...while sitting in a chair he'd specially designed for sex acts.
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  #41  
Old 07-06-2013, 06:25 PM
RealityChuck RealityChuck is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackmannii View Post
Virginia Rappe, who died of a ruptured bladder after, um, partying with Fatty Arbuckle.
Let's just say that that is far too unclear to be listed as a fact.

Randy California -- guitarist for Spirit -- died while rescuing his son (successfully) from a riptide. He was unable to escape it, and drowned.

Doug Kenney -- founder of The National Lampoon and screenwriter for Animal House and Caddyshack -- died after he fell off a cliff in Hawaii.

Vivian Stanshall of the Bonzo Dog Band died in an apartment fire. He may have been too drunk to realize what was happening.

A bizarre coincidence: Roger Bowen, who played Col. Henry Blake in the movie version of M*A*S*H and McLean Stevenson, who played the role on TV, died within 24 hours of each other. The news of Bowen's death was not released to the media for a week, to avoid people confusing them. Both men died of heart attacks.
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  #42  
Old 07-06-2013, 06:52 PM
Son of a Rich Son of a Rich is online now
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Originally Posted by Jackmannii View Post
Virginia Rappe, who died of a ruptured bladder after, um, partying with Fatty Arbuckle.
The way I read it, the jury of Roscoe's last trial issued him a written apology, something I don't think they would have done if they thought he was, um, culpable in any way.
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  #43  
Old 07-06-2013, 07:14 PM
Gatopescado Gatopescado is offline
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Boy, you weren't kiddin', OP! That linked list was weak!

All the "celebrity" deaths I can think of aren't bizarre enough for mention. Run of the mill air and car crashes.

Fun Fact: Sonny Bono died in Nevada, not California. I was there that day, by the way.
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  #44  
Old 07-06-2013, 07:26 PM
buddha_david buddha_david is offline
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Originally Posted by Amateur Barbarian View Post
One of the most famous stunt drivers in Hollywood, whose name eludes both me and Google at the moment, was killed when his stunt car rolled over, at low speed, as he turned to return to the stunt location after a successful run.
Dar Robinson.

The original lead singer of Norwegian black metal band Mayhem (ironically named "Dead") killed himself with a shotgun blast to the head. What makes his death bizarre is that his creepy bandmates rearranged the body and took photographs (one of which famously ended up on a bootleg live album), crafted jewelry out of his skull fragments, and reportedly (though it was never proven) ate portions of his brain.

Jeff Porcaro, famous session drummer for Toto, Steely Dan, and countless other bands, fell ill and died shortly after spraying insecticide at his home. However, his official cause of death was attributed to cocaine intoxication, thus robbing him of the distinction of dying in a bizarre gardening accident.

Film director Alan J. Pakula died in a freak car accident -- another vehicle kicked up a large chunk of metal, which smashed through his windshield and killed him instantly.

Last edited by buddha_david; 07-06-2013 at 07:27 PM..
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  #45  
Old 07-06-2013, 08:17 PM
RealityChuck RealityChuck is offline
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French president Felix Faure died while in the middle of some sex act with a much younger woman. There are many rumors as to what it might be, though a blowjob seems the most common explanation.
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  #46  
Old 07-06-2013, 08:34 PM
Zeke N. Destroi Zeke N. Destroi is offline
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Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
Tennessee Williams was having difficulty opening a bottle of medicine with a childproof cap. He ended up prying the cap off with his teeth and accidentally swallowed it, causing his death.
No shit?!? Did he choke on it or did it cause a blockage in his innards?
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  #47  
Old 07-06-2013, 08:57 PM
Sir Prize Sir Prize is offline
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Carl "Alfalfa" Switzer got shot demanding $50 for a lost dog that was found.
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  #48  
Old 07-06-2013, 09:02 PM
Zeke N. Destroi Zeke N. Destroi is offline
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Originally Posted by pancakes3 View Post
He was mentioned in the article.

Jimi Heseldon - inventor of the segway - fell off a cliff while riding a segway.
I don't think he invented it, I think he just owned the company. I could easily be wrong.

Either way that was one of the most laughable deaths I've ever heard of.

Good call.
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  #49  
Old 07-06-2013, 09:03 PM
Accidental Martyr Accidental Martyr is offline
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Tony Scott's suicide was pretty bizarre.
http://radaronline.com/exclusives/20...-test-suicide/
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  #50  
Old 07-06-2013, 09:20 PM
Mahaloth Mahaloth is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Half Man Half Wit View Post
From the article in the OP about Michael Carradine's death:

Is this accurate? I always thought he'd been found dead.
Yes, I think this is correct. Found dead....from autoerotic asphyxiation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeke N. Destroi View Post
No shit?!? Did he choke on it or did it cause a blockage in his innards?
Choked to death.
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